Wales Pension Partnership announces RI policy
The Wales Pension Partnership (WPP), the pooling entity for the eight Welsh LGPS Funds, has announced a new Responsible Investment (RI) policy, highlighting its commitment to responsible investment and desire to be a leader in this area.
The new overarching policy was developed collaboratively by the WPP and its eight Constituent Authorities* and will be adopted by them all. At the same time, it will allow individual Constituent Authorities to maintain and develop their own RI policies.
Commenting on the development of the new RI policy, Chris Moore, Director of Corporate Services from the WPP Host Authority, says: “Responsible investment policies are vitally important not only to the administration of our funds but to the future of Wales. We recognised how crucial it was for the WPP to establish its own responsible investment policy and aimed to ensure that all stakeholders of the WPP were represented in the policy’s development. Building support and gaining consensus among the Constituent Authorities was imperative. We needed to be sure that the policy was representative of the broad range of investment beliefs within the Pool. We are thrilled to have agreement on a policy that can now be implemented on behalf of the underlying Constituent Authorities. We are all highly committed to seeing this new ambitious RI Policy succeed.”
In its new RI policy, the WPP has agreed to prioritise a number of actions over the next 12 months, including developing a specific climate risk policy and engaging with its investment managers to develop an appropriate set of RI monitoring metrics.
The full RI policy can be found on the Wales Pension Partnership website.
* List of Constituent Authorities
- Cardiff & Vale of Glamorgan Pension Fund
- Clwyd Pension Fund
- Dyfed Pension Fund
- Torfaen Pension Fund
- Gwynedd Pension Fund
- Powys Pension Fund
- Rhondda Cynon Taf Pension Fund
- City and County of Swansea Pension Fund
The Wales Pension Partnership (WPP) was established in 2017. The WPP is a collaboration of the eight LGPS funds (Constituent Authorities) covering the whole of Wales and is one of eight national Local Government Pension pools.
It has a long, successful history of collaboration, including examples that pre-date the Government’s pooling initiative. It is proud of its unique identity as a Pool – its Constituent Authorities represent and span the entirety of Wales. Being democratically accountable means it provide the best of strong public sector governance and transparency.
WPP’s operating model is designed to be flexible and deliver value for money. It appointed an external Operator and makes use of external advisers to bring best of breed expertise to support the running of the Pool. The Operator is Link Fund Solutions and they have partnered with Russell Investments to manage the investments and assist in the reduction of investment management costs for all the Constituent Authorities.
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Wales Pension Partnership awards Private Markets investment contracts
The Wales Pension Partnership (WPP) today announces a series of appointments to facilitate implementation of its Pooled Infrastructure and Private Debt investment solutions.
Russell Investments will develop the WPP pooled private debt investment programme, GCM Grosvenor will implement closed-ended infrastructure investments and open-ended infrastructure will be invested through CBRE Global Infrastructure Fund, IFM Global Infrastructure Fund and Octopus Renewables Infrastructure SCSp.
The appointments follow a rigorous procurement process run by the WPP with investment consultancy firm bfinance. The development will enable efficient and effective access to illiquid asset classes that are fast becoming significant holdings for LGPS funds.
The WPP’s Joint Governance Committee was established in 2017 and is responsible for oversight of the pool’s partner organisations and the services they deliver to the LGPS funds in Wales.
Carmarthenshire County Council acts as Host Authority, liaising day to day with the Pool’s external partners, on behalf of all of the LGPS funds in Wales.
Chris Moore, Director of Corporate Services at Carmarthenshire County Council (Host Authority for the WPP):
“Alternative asset classes have historically been challenging to access in a cost-effective manner. Pooling offers the opportunity to address this challenge. The WPP’s constituent funds have increasing strategic demand for these investments, and we look forward to working with our newly appointed partners to meet this demand.”
WPP wins the Pool of the Year Award at LAPF Investments Awards 2021
We are thrilled and honoured to announce that we were successful in winning Pool of the Year at the LAPF Investment Awards 2021, which took place in London on 29 March 2022.
We would like to thank all the 8 LGPS funds in Wales and our external providers for their continued support, our stakeholders and all involved in managing and providing an exceptional service to the WPP.
Signatory to the UK Stewardship Code
We are delighted to announce that the Wales Pension Partnership (WPP) is now a signatory to the UK Stewardship Code.
The 2020 UK Stewardship Code sets a high bar for stewardship, a standard to which the WPP sought to meet through its approach to responsible investment. The WPP is therefore delighted to be recognised as a signatory to the Code.
Our report for the year ending 31 March 2021 covered the first step on WPP’s journey, a year when we put in place solid foundations through our appointment of Robeco as a stewardship provider, the establishment of our Responsible Investment Sub-Group and began the process of ensuring that our policy commitments were implemented. We also worked closely with Link Fund Solutions and Russell Investments during the year to develop and implement an innovative decarbonisation strategy for our Global Opportunities Fund, a process that we have since sought to extend to our other Sub-Funds.
We recognise that there is much more to do but we remain committed to building our understanding of responsible investment practices and evolving our approach. We learned much from the reporting process and have already taken steps to implement some of those learnings, for example, through increasing the scrutiny of our providers and the assets they manage for us. We do this recognising that the WPP has a responsibility to all eight Constituent Authorities within Wales, and the members of their pension schemes, to be effective stewards of their assets.